Wondering what to serve with tamales? Don’t worry – I’ve got your whole menu sorted out, with the traditional side dishes and drinks!
? Side Dishes For Tamales
It seems like an impossible task right? Making Mexican tamales from scratch starting with homemade masa and red sauce then you still have to worry what to serve them with!? It sound But don’t worry…. I hA lot of the traditional dishes we associate with a Thanksgiving table are designed for and by meat eaters.
And while I can easily fill up on tamales alone, it’s always best to pair them up with a few complementing sides. But what do you eat with tamales besides rice and beans? Let me show you how to eat them like we do in Mexico.
Oh and don’t forget to check out my bonus idea for how to eat tamales for breakfast!
1. Frijoles Puercos
I do have to start with beans as it is the most classic way to eat them with. But these Frijoles Puercos are not your plain type. In Sonora we call them “Frijoles De Fiesta” (party beans) since they’re serve at all events like weddings, quinceañeras, posadas, or any gathering….specially if involves tamales!
2. Ensalada De Coditos
Ensalada De Coditos is another classic recipe that will be served with tamales. These pasta salad along with beans and tamales, are the perfect trio that you’ll find at most Mexican gatherings.
3. Arroz Rojo
There is always room for Mexican Red Rice! This is one of the most common dishes in Mexico.
4. Refried Beans
I feel like you cannot go wrong with these beans. The creaminess balances perfectly with the spiciness of a tamal.
5. Rajas Con Crema
Rajas is a great dish to pair with tamales as the creaminess texture blends so well with the flavors of the main dish.
6. Champiñones A La Mexicana
These Mushrooms Mexican style are a delicious and healthy side dish. You won’t feel guilty for those extra calories found in tamales!
7. Espagueti Verde
What’s not to love about Espagueti Verde? They’re delicious, easy to make and so creamy!
8. Refried Black Beans
Here is another easy and healthy dish to pair tamales with. The best part? This recipe is made with canned beans! This means one less thing to worry about cooking from scratch.
9. Mexican Sopa
Ah my beloved sopa! This classic soup goes with anything including tamales. Make these two together and you’ll be transported back to abuelita’s home.
10. Arroz Verde
Arroz Verde is a delicious and healthy rice recipe, perfect for any meal! You’ll love the flavor combo of the poblano pepper with cilantro and spinach.
What sauce to eat with tamales?
All salsas and sauces are not created equal when it comes to serving with tamales. You need a chile based salsa to highlight the flavors of the masa. Here are a few of my recommendations:
11. Salsa Guajillo
This Guajillo Sauce recipe is super quick and easy to make, and full of the best smoky and slightly-spicy flavors that everyone is sure to love!
12. Salsa Macha
Get ready to LOVE this magnificent infused-oil salsa. Sometimes you just need to add an extra kick to your tamales and this is perfect for that.
13. Chile De Arbol Salsa
An authentic Chile De Arbol Salsa that goes perfect for taco fillings, tamales and more!
The milky creaminess of horchata is the perfect drink for tamales or anything made with spices.
Here is another milky & creamy drink that brings the perfect balance for tamales.
16. Agua De Tamarindo
Agua De Tamarindo is a must for any Mexican meal!
17. Agua De Jamaica
Make a big jar of Jamaica for everyone to enjoy while eating tamales. Is a classic drink and a favorite of many Mexican kitchens.
18. Atole De Pinole
Need a warm drink? Try Atole De Pinole!
You’ll find champurrado and tamales during posadas or any Mexican holiday. Try this and you’ll know why this is the perfect combo during the cold months.
20. Mexican Hot Chocolate
Full of the flavors that reminds us of Mexico this will be your new favorite hot chocolate recipe!
There are so many more options so feel free to explore more Mexican recipes. We didn’t even go into desserts so don’t forget to check those out as well.
Here is my favorite way to eat leftover tamales the next day. Frying them to a crisp renders incredible flavor and texture. Then pair them with a couple of sunny side up egg (over medium for me) and you’ll have one amazing meal!
What To Serve With Tamales (21 authentic recipes)
- 1 tamal husk removed
- 2 eggs
- salt and pepper to taste
- Place the tamal in a preheated non stick skillet or cast iron skillet. Fry over medium to medium high heat until all sides are crispy. About 5 minutes.
- Move the tamal to the side and lower heat. Once the skillet has cooled down a little bit, crack eggs into pan.
- Sprinkle with a bit of salt and pepper.
- Cook over low heat until most of the white has set.
- For over medium eggs, carefully flip eggs over and cook for 1 minute.
- Remove tamal and eggs from pan and place on plate.
- Enjoy while hot.
Muy Delish Notes:
- The tamales can be any kind: red, green, or sweet. Just pick your favorite ones!
- There is no need to add extra oil as the tamales should release a little oil into the skillet.
- Cook the eggs over low heat. If the heat is too high, the white of the egg will overcook before the yolk has a chance to cook.
- Use a thin spatula to slide under the tamales and eggs.
Add Your Own Private Notes
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The nutritional information and US conversions are calculated automatically. I cannot guarantee the accuracy of this data. If this is important to you, please verify with your favourite nutrition calculator and/or unit conversion tool.
Love all your Sonora root recipes. My abuelito was born there. At any rate, I’m your editor today lol. Please check all the typos when you get a chance. Happy holidays 😘
So much incredible choice! The salsas look amazing
Bookmarking this page as it is full of everything that my family loves. Thank you for compiling this!!
I love tamales and I’m always looking for new ways to serve them up so thank you for this helpful guide! I’m going to have to try that Chile De Arbol Salsa — it looks amazing as a side dish for tamales!
Loved the agua de jamaica recipe! Thanks for sharing this fabulous collection!
Wow !!! Thank you for all these ideas !! I see a lot of recipes that I want to try when I make tamales in two weeks ?